Social media maven Maria Ogneva announced today that she is joining Yammer next week as head of community. “To me, this is not just another job. In many ways, I feel like everything I’ve done up until this point was to give me the tools and skills to do this job effectively,” she writes. “Enterprises face challenges I can sink my teeth into.”
Ogneva tells us the role head of community role will encompass several areas, both internal and external. She’ll be working on internal initiatives to improve community and collaboration within Yammer. “I’m going to provide a lot of best practices and process around blogging, tweeting, participation in events, etc,” she says. She’ll also be “Collaborating with other departments to make social media engagement a natural part of the team’s lives, if they choose to participate.”
Externally, she’ll be working with customers to learn how to improve Yammer. She’ll also be creating content such as case studies.
Last year Paul Greenberg profiled her as a rising star, but noted “To call Maria Ogneva a ‘rising’ star is a bit disingenuous really. She is already star in her own right.” Ogneva was most recently the director of community engagement at the CRM startup Nimble. Prior to that she was director of social media at the social media analytics company Attensity.
The hire is coup for Yammer as it jockeys for leadership and influence in the enterprise community and collaboration space. “I think it’s a great role for her,” says R “Ray” Wang, principal analyst and CEO of Constellation Research. “Yammer’s hasn’t done the best job with outbound communications. Maria’s the right person for the job!”
Mikeal Rogers, a former Mozilla developer and CouchOne “employee number one,” recently joined Yammer as a developer advocate – another talent win for the company, and one that should improve its standing with developers.
The role of social media advocates is growing among vendors. Mark Fidelman wrote about the “Scoble effect” last month. Fidelman noted the correlation between Rackspace hiring Robert Scoble and the company’s stock price ( Rackspace talked to Dennis Howlett about the subject), and noted several several other companies that have social media evangelists. Fidelman himself works for Mindtouch in that capacity.
Greenberg noted in his CRM Watchlist that Attensity got on his radar thanks to Ogneva. We’ll have to wait and see if Yammer experiences a “Ogneva effect.”